Twitter, Mobile Phones and Mark Pesce

…in the last six months, a lot of people in Australia have discovered Twitter – particularly those folks who, like myself, are interested in what’s […] 

Orwell’s Scottish Ancestry & Slavery*

“He hated Scotsmen!”    Kay Ekevall He wrote under the name ‘Orwell’, partly because he preferred separate identity as an author, partly because he disliked […] 

Orwell’s Streptomycin

“I am a lot better, but I had a bad fortnight with the secondary effects of the streptomycin. I suppose with all these drugs it’s […] 

Tombs: Sharing Orwell’s Penchant for Puncturing Shibboleths

This review originally appeared in  George Orwell Studies Volume 3 Number 2. George Orwell continues to have an extraordinary influence on how the English view England, writes […] 

#Review #FlipTheSystemOz

“…flipping the system is about changing education from the ground up by allowing teachers to take the lead as a trusted and meaningful part of […] 

Orwell in Paris: Edith Morgan

“According to the 1926 French census, there were 17,966 Americans in France, of which 9,363 were in the Seine Department that included Paris.“  Nancy L […] 

Orwell in Paris: Ruth Graves II

“I came back to America in 1939, in October, but do not feel that I am at home yet. New York has been most inhospitable […] 

Orwell in Paris: Ruth Graves

“Among the letters in Orwell’s possession at his death was one from Ruth Graves, whom he had known twenty years earlier, in Paris. She had, […] 

Postcard: Kastellorizo, Greece

I had not planned to visit Kastellorizo, just a few kilometres off the coast of Turkey. In fact, I had never heard of this Greek […] 

Did Orwell smoke opium in Burma?

George Orwell spent five years working as a police officer during the 1920s before unexpectedly resigning to become a writer. There is compelling circumstantial evidence […] 

Review: Untitled (Past, Present, Future)

Visiting the Stedelijk Museum with my family, after three rewarding but long days of getting value for money from our museum discount card, was one […] 

Shared fictions

‘Human power depends on mass cooperation, mass cooperation depends on manufacturing mass identities – and all mass identities are based on fictional stories, not on […] 

Review #GeorgeOrwellOnScreen

My positive disposition towards George Orwell On Screen (Adaptations, Documentaries and Docudramas on Film and Television) – before ever getting to read it – was due to David […] 

Collecting Orwell: A Kind of Compulsion*

*Originally published in George Orwell Studies There are few 20th century writers as collectable as George Orwell. Rare book auctions regularly fetch extraordinary prices, especially for his […] 

Skara Brae and V. Gordon Childe

Tourists strolling the ancient, Neolithic settlement of Skara Brae will note the site owes its “current presentation” to the Australian archaeologist who excavated it between […] 

A Wider World View: India-Australia Exchange

Cultural exchange is a very important value for our school. “A Wider World View @DHS” is a broad program encouraging and nurturing intercultural understanding, school […] 

The Diaries of Henry Osborne (Part 2)

Reading Henry’s diaries is taking longer than expected. Tumbling down the research rabbit hole every few pages is a time-consuming pleasure. Is that book Henry mentioned available readily online? How […] 

Building the Windmill (or knocking it down again?)

“…the animals toiled harder than ever, thinking it well worth while to plod to and fro all day with blocks of stone if by doing […] 

Who We Are and How We Got Here by David Reich #review and my #reading in April

“The breakthrough that all archaeologists have been waiting for; a truly exciting account of the way in which ancient DNA is making us rethink prehistory. […] 

The Diaries of Henry Osborne (Part I)

“A sub-deputy’s job was to supervise the poppy growers in his district and make sure the crop was cultivated in the most efficient way. The […] 

The Shepherd’s Hut by Tim Winton #review and my #reading in March

You’re a kid, you don’t know anything. Mum said school mighta been different for me if I only give a damn. Maybe it was wasted […] 

#Essays #TheRubofTime #FeelFree #review and my #reading in February

The day-to-day business of compiling a novel often seems to consist of nothing but decisions – decisions, decisions, decisions. Should this paragraph go here? Or […] 

Parents and Education in NSW

Recently I overheard a conversation between parents in a bookshop. They were struggling to understand NAPLAN, “minimum standards” and what a “band 8” actually meant […] 

Lost Connections by Johann Hari #review and my #reading in January

“We have been systematically misinformed about what depression and anxiety are.”                              […] 

George Orwell and William Shakespeare

George Orwell aka Eric Blair (1903-50) is now clearly second only to Shakespeare in the pantheon of English literary giants. In our current contemporary context, […] 

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